You need a getaway. An escape. An opportunity to step out of reality and relax, rejuvenate and recharge. Every milspouse does.

I whisked away two of my best gals for a #MilSpaWeekend at the magical Berkeley Springs State Park. We said goodbye to our husbands and children, jumped in the car, enjoyed coffees, music and conversation as we geared ourselves up to slow things down. Ahh…


When I learned that this hidden gem was just two hours from Fort Meade, MD, I jumped at the chance to visit. Originally named “Bath,” Berkeley Springs, WV has been popular since before the days of George Washington. Don’t believe me? Check out the President’s bathtub (photo below).

What makes this place so special are the warm mineral waters that flow from the springs at a constant temperature of 74.3 degrees F. Throughout history, the “medicine waters” of Berkeley Springs have been known for their healing powers. This sounded absolutely perfect for a girls’ weekend.

Their water is delicious too, and you can drink it straight from the source. In fact, it has ranked high in international water competitions. As one man told us, “Drink this and you’ll be ten years younger.” Challenge accepted.

Thanks for the photo honey, now, see you later!

Royal Treatment

We arrived at the spa and were greeted warmly, provided lockers and fluffy bathrobes. The bath houses are separated by gender, and no swimsuits are required. (I was stationed in Germany, so this was like a little taste of Europe all over again…wink, wink.)

We chose to take a dip in a private Roman bath. It was 750 gallons of mineral water in a ceramic tile, walk-in private tub. There we enjoyed the heated 102-degree F water as we soaked, floated, conversed and drank chilled spring water.

After 15 minutes, we were told that it was time for our massages. We walked out in our robes and there, waiting for us, was a team of staff members, calling each one of us by name. “Who’s Jackie? Come with me.” I felt a bit like royalty.

I followed my massage therapist into a dimly lit private room and enjoyed a 30-minute Swedish-style full-body massage with pure olive oil. After relaxing for half an hour, I was treated to a warm shower, already prepped and waiting for me, complete with body wash, shampoo, conditioner, and towels.

A gal can get used to this.

Pretty sure this place is magical… Photo credit: Kelsey Helms

Exploring Berkeley Springs

Aside from the springs, my ladies and I enjoyed both the day- and nightlife of delightful Berkeley Springs. Easily walkable, the town hosts art shows, live music and festivals, and it is a place I plan to return to. Oh, and there’s a castle — we didn’t get to tour it, but it added to the ambiance.

The ladies and I enjoyed strolling around, enjoying the local color and flavor. We had beer and lunch in the pub at The Country Inn of Berkeley Springs, had dinner and sipped cocktails at The Naked Olive, sat at the bar and indulged in tasty food at Tari’s Premier Cafe & Inn and browsed downtown shops like the Berkeley Springs Antique Mall and Portals New Age Store


Military Discount on Our Nation’s First Spa

George Washington’s bathtub!

Are you ready to pamper yourself with a fantastic getaway?  Good news — military receives a 10% discount! You can also opt for a Spa Package that includes both pampering at Berkeley Springs State Park and lodging at the nearby Cacapon Resort State Park (article to follow on the latter).

Perfect for a ladies’ getaway or a date weekend, enjoy a hike on one of the many trails at Cacapon Resort, relax in a hot mineral bath, and receive a Swedish massage at Berkeley Springs. End your day back at the lodge — now that’s the way to relax!

The Spa Package includes:

  • Accommodations and breakfast for two at Cacapon Resort State Park
  • Spa treatment at nearby historic Berkeley Springs State Park (30 minute Swedish Massage and mineral shower for two)
  • Offered mid-week, Sunday through Thursday nights, the package excludes holidays. Rates are based on double occupancy, and single occupancy package is also available.
  • Prices as follows:
    • Summer Package (May 25 – Sept. 2) — $190
    • Fall Package (Sept. 3 – Oct. 31) — $186
    • Winter Package (Nov. 1 – Mar. 31) — $170
    • Spring Package (Apr. 1 – May 24) — $180
  • Reservations are required, please mention “Spa Package.”
  • For packages and rates, call (304) 258-1022.

For more info please visit

Special thanks goes to Kelly Smith, assistant superintendent of Cacapon Resort State Park for sponsoring this trip.

Boom — 10 years younger! Photo credit: Kelsey Helms




Powered by Facebook Comments

A self-described “Jackie of All Trades,” former Army wife Jackie Toops enjoys exploring the various facets of her personality by chronicling military life, world travels, family, her love of the arts and more. Her academic background is in the fields of Interdisciplinary Humanities, Museum Studies and Nonprofit Management, and she has overseen public relations for museums, galleries and universities. Jackie’s articles have been featured on Army Wife 101, Wall Street International Magazine, SoFluential, HomeAway, Military Biz Connection and FamiliesGo. While stationed in Germany, she regularly discussed her articles on-air with the Armed Forces Network in Wiesbaden. A mother of two, Jackie enjoys coffee, freelance writing, languages and discovering new ways to express herself. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.